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Coastal Defence Establishments

Volume 19: debated on Friday 12 March 1982

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asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the House of Commons Library details of existing byelaws associated with the control of boating activities in the vincinity of coastal defence establishments, together with charts of the areas of sea and coast thus controlled, showing how such areas are delineated; and if he will make a statement.

[pursuant to his reply, 22 February 1982, c. 303.]: I have done so today. Several of the byelaws were introduced many years ago, and not all contain plans for the sea areas affected. The cost of making plans available in such cases would not be justified. Amendments to byelaws are in progress in some of these locations and new byelaws are to be introduced at others.

asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether he will list in the Official Report the names and locations of coastal defence establishements where firing to sea takes place; what restrictions on sailing and boating are in force at each establishment; whether restrictions are enforced through byelaws in each case, giving the area of sea and coast affected by such restrictions; and if he will made a statement.

[pursuant to his reply, 22 February 1982, c. 303.]: The following is a list of coastal ranges whose danger areas extend over both land and sea. Ranges whose danger areas extend only over the sea are excluded.


Air Weapons RangeBridgewater Bay, Somerset
Bombardment RangeCape Wrath, Highland
Infantry Weapons RangeKingsdown, Deal Kent
Fraser RangeEastney, Hants
British Underwater Test and Evaluation CentreRaasay, Skye and Lochalsh
Infantry Weapons RangeStraight Point, Devon
Firing RangeHMS Cambridge, Wembury, Devon
Small Arms RangeGrove Point, Portland, Dorset


Infantry Weapons RangeBallykinler, Co. Down
Infantry Weapons RangeBarry Budeon, Tayside
The Royal Artillery RangeBenbecula, Western Isles
Infantry Weapons RangeBlackdog, Grampian
Infantry Weapons RangeCaldicott (Severn Tunnel) Gwent
The Royal Armoured Corps RangeCastlemartin, Dyfed
Infantry Weapons RangeChickerell, Dorset
Infantry Weapons RangeFingringhoe, Essex
Infantry Weapons RangeFort George, Highland
Infantry Weapons RangeHornsea, Yorks
Infantry Weapons RangeHythe, Kent
The Royal Armoured Corps RangeLulworth, Dorset
Infantry Weapons RangeLydd, Kent
Infantry Weapons RangeIydden Spout, Kent
Infantry Weapons RangeMagilligan, Co Londonderry
The Royal Artillery RangeManorbier, Dyfed
Infantry Weapons RangePenally, Dyfed
Infantry Weapons RangePilning, Avon
Infantry Weapons RangeSealand, Cheshire
Infantry Weapons RangeShoeburyness, Essex
Infantry Weapons RangeTregantle, Cornwall
Infantry Weapons RangeTy Croes, Gwynedd
The Royal Engineers Demolition RangeYantlet, Kent

Royal Air Force

Air Weapons RangeCowden, Humberside
Air Weapons RangeDonna Nook, Lines
Air Weapons RangeHolbeach, Lines
Air Weapons RangePembrey, Dyfed
Air Weapons RangeTain, Highland
Air Weapons RangeWainfleet, Lines

Procurement Executive

Royal Aircraft EstablishmentAberporth, Dyfed
Proof and Experimental EstablishmentEskmeals, Cumbria
Military Vehicle Experimental EstablishmentKirkcudbright, Dumfries and Galloway
Aircraft Bombing Sea RangeLuce Bay, Dumfries and Galloway
Proof and Experimental EstablishmentPendine, Dyfed
Proof and Experimental EstablishmentShoeburyness, Essex

Territorial Army

Infantry Weapons RangeAltcar, Merseyside
Infantry Weapons RangeBinn Hill, Grampian
Infantry Weapons RangeDingwall, Highland
Infantry Weapons RangeLower Barvas, Isle of Lewis
Infantry Weapons RangePakefield, Suffolk
Infantry Weapons RangeWhitburn, Tyne and Wear
Infantry Weapons RangeWick, Highland

Mandatory restrictions on sailing and boating can only be imposed to the extent that these are provided for in byelaws, copies of which I have placed in the Library. The sea areas covered by such mandatory restrictions are designated in the byelaws. In a few cases, however, defence establishments may have understandings with local sailing and boating communities, under which boats voluntarily leave those parts of the sea danger area in which firing is to take place. Of course, clear range procedures are followed to ensure that no boat in the danger area is at risk.